By Jeffrey Wolpers
Maria Isabel Chavez is a 45-year-old mother in Harlingen, Texas. Her 4-year-old daughter, Jayleen, is the light of her life. Jayleen has Down Syndrome.
Maria was referred to BCFS’ Project HOPES program by a neighbor. She began receiving in-home parenting education with the evidence-based curriculum SafeCare.
Within the first month, a BCFS Family Services Coordinator determined that Jayleen could benefit from physical and speech therapy, and located a therapist in the community to provide the services. When the therapist identified some tools that would help Jayleen improve her mobility, BCFS purchased the supplies and helped Jayleen get the most out of her therapy sessions.
When Mrs. Chavez expressed an interest in counseling for her and her husband to learn more about what to expect related to Jayleen’s development, BCFS connected the family to a therapist specializing in working with children with developmental delays.
BCFS’ Project HOPES has helped the Chavez family through direct counseling or referrals to other community resources that could meet the family’s needs.
“For going to the doctor, I learned when it is necessary [to take my child] and when it is not… because sometimes you get scared and think you need a doctor, and you do not need to go. They have also helped me with my child’s speech therapy services, and everything that they have helped me with has really helped me out.”
—Maria Isabel Chavez
Project HOPES (Healthy Outcomes Through Prevention & Early Support) helps families with young children 0 to 5 years old overcome barriers they might be facing by providing parenting education, case management, basic needs support, crisis intervention, counseling, support groups and transportation.